Katelyn's Story: Living Proof
I am living proof that anything is possible; something so shattered and broken can turn into such a beautiful piece of living art! I am a beautiful disaster because I have not just survived; I am the meaning of resilience, and I've learned to thrive!
I identify with this brand because it took almost a lifetime of disaster for me to truly find my own beauty! Something might seem disastrous, but there is always a reason that things happen the way they do. It’s just up to us to find the beauty in it all.
I've had a rough life. My father passed away when I was just 16, and I lost so many others who were close to me. I was abused by many different people in my life, which made me feel worthless, hopeless, and helpless. I was always bullied and made fun of for being overweight, short, not being pretty enough, etc. I buried myself in my school work to try to ignore it, but that just made things worse. I never had many friends, and the ones I did have usually turned on me. I was tired and alone, spending over 30 years of my life self-harming. I tried to end my life more times than I can count, and I was in and out of hospitals for struggling with severe mental illness since I was 16.
Five years ago, I finally decided that I was enough and worth the fight, that I was strong and not put on this earth by mistake. I have a mom, sister, and two best friends who never gave up on me. I have three beautiful nieces who now look up to me. I finally saw that the light at the end of the tunnel was not just another train coming at me, and that just like a Phoenix, I too can rise from the ashes!
I am 38 and can proudly say I've been self-harm and hospital-free for over 5 years now. After being bounced around from group home to group home, I just moved into my very own independent apartment! I've designed all of my own tattoos, which include a Phoenix rising, a compass, a family tree with a broken chain, and some cover-up tattoos! I recently checked off so many things on my bucket list, including swimming with dolphins, holding sloths and monkeys, going to Disney World, and traveling out of the country! I have become a peer support specialist and have a new job caring for others and giving back. I am a warrior and now have a completely new outlook on life! I now know that there IS hope, and sometimes in life, you definitely have to fall before you fly!
I love the hoodies because if the sayings resonate with me, then hopefully, they will change the life of the person who is reading it!